A Mahopac resident was among five people charged Thursday by New Jersey authorities with filing fraudulent applications for federal relief funds in the wake of Superstorm Sandy.
Dominic M. Moccia, 66, received $33,839 in relief funds to which he was not entitled by filing bogus applications for FEMA assistance and a state grant under the Homeowner Resettlement Program (RSP), authorities charged.Moccia claimed in his applications that a home he owns on Webster Avenue in Seaside Heights, N.J., which was damaged by Superstorm Sandy was his primary residence when Sandy struck the Northeast on Oct. 29, 2012.
His primary residence was in Mahopac, and the Jersey Shore residence was a secondary/vacation home, New Jersey Attorney General Christopher S. Porrino said.
The scam brought Moccia $23,839 from FEMA for home repairs and rental assistance and a $10,000 RSP grant, the attorney general said.
In separate cases, Moccia and four New Jersey residents were each charged with various counts of theft by deception and unsworn falsification, he said.
Each received summonses ordering them to appear in court.
The defendants "stole from disaster relief programs and by extension from the victims who were hardest hit by the storm,” Porrino said.
“Stealing any type of public aid is reprehensible," added New Jersey Division of Criminal Justice Director Elie Honig, "but it’s especially egregious to steal relief funds in the context of a historic disaster, when every dollar is needed for recovery.”